Shannon Port bosses grilled at Oireachtas Committee

Representatives of the board of Shannon Foynes Port Authority came before the Transport Committee earlier. On yes, it’s been a fun day in the Committees. The videos of proceedings (captured below, syncing problems due to Oireachtas.ie) are well worth watching. “Legal advice” is an acceptable excuse for dodging any and all measure of accountability, seemingly.

Much props to Deputy Fergus O’Dowd, whom I’ve drawn attention to here in the past. There are good Irish politicians, which is something I think many of us, myself included, can be guilty of forgetting. Here’s an example…

The recent Sunday Times feature by John Burns on the Shannon Foynes situation is probably the best summary of a very very …ehem… odd story.

There was nothing new added today, however, it was interesting to observe the bizarre behaviour of the two local Fianna Fáil politicians, Senator Ned O’Sullivan and Councillor Kieran O’Hanlon, who appeared at the committee as former and current company directors respectively. They seemed to be very wary of answering or even encouraging the asking of, any further questions.

“We should be looking forward not backwards…” riiiiight.

Check out Ned O’Sullivan’s comments at the end. Yes, it’s the same Ned O’Sullivan who was a director of the Port for sixteen years – including the relevant period. Yep, the same Ned who said on John O’Donoghue’s resignation that journalists had caused a decent man to resign by filing FOI requests on “lazy days when they [had] nothing better to do”. Same one who wanted expenses removed from the FOI Act. Ah, Ned

At four minutes into the video below he actually says that it was okay for the director of the Port to set up a company in his own name and give that company contracts from the Port (without tender). Why was it okay? Well, because the director was getting paid less than the director of Cork Harbour and sure it was only fair.

He actually says that, really, he does… no really! Watch it!

3 thoughts on “Shannon Port bosses grilled at Oireachtas Committee”

  1. Given that he has relied on legal advice he should provide it to the committee since he has waived any privilege in it by relying on it.

  2. Yep – he may have done, though he doesn’t say so. Usually they don’t “legal advice” is a like massive shield these days. Senior civil servants, Rody Molloy… legal advice, untested legal advice, like kyrptonite or something…

  3. Is the person who provides the legal advice liable if the advice is subsequently proved to be inaccurate? I mean, people could advise you to do anything, but the advice might not be based on anything justifiable.

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